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Everything to Know Before Paving a Driveway

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According to some real estate agents, paving a driveway could add between $10,000 and $20,000 to the value of your home.

Even if you’re not planning on selling in the near future, a well-kept paved driveway can maintain its appearance for decades, giving you a great return on your investment.

It will also be easy to care for and more resistant to freezing and thawing in colder weather.

Here’s everything you should consider before deciding on whether to pave your driveway.

Cost

When looking at the cost to pave a driveway, remember that not all driveways are made equal.

Things you’ll need to consider include:

  • the size of the area you’re paving
  • the contractor you choose
  • the materials you use
  • ongoing maintenance

Size

Driveways should be a minimum of 10 feet wide per vehicle and where space allows at least 12 feet.

This allows enough room for a vehicle’s doors to open with enough space for passengers to be able to get out.

Plan for a length of 18 feet or more per vehicle so you have space to get around all sides of your vehicle.

Also, remember to check with your local building office for any specific requirements before you finalize your plans.

Materials

Two of the most common materials used for driveway paving are asphalt and concrete.

Asphalt is cheaper, more flexible, quicker to install, and more common.

Concrete is usually longer lasting, lower maintenance, and has a higher long term value.

One other thing worth noting is that asphalt doesn’t always give you smooth, straight edges unless you use concrete edging to help shape the asphalt.

Maintenance

Without proper maintenance, a paved driveway is still prone to damage and a short lifespan.

If you pave your driveway with asphalt, give it a thorough clean twice a year to remove build ups of debris and dirt. make sure any holes or cracks are treated with sealant as soon as possible.

Concrete driveways take less maintenance but are more prone to staining so clean any oil, gasoline, or other spillage stains as soon as possible.

Also for a new concrete driveway, use sand instead of salt to help with deicing as it’s less harsh on the concrete.

Choosing a Contractor

The most important factor in driveway paving is going to be the quality of the installation, which will depend on the contractor you use.

When looking at contractors, get more than one price quote so you feel confident in the price you’re paying and go for someone that has a strong local reputation.

Some things you’ll want to agree on with the contractor before starting work include the size and dimensions, driveway thickness, drainage, timeframe, and construction process.

Is Paving a Driveway Right for Your Property?

Paving a driveway isn’t cheap. There’s the initial cost plus upkeep.

But if you take the time to pave it right, and give it the ongoing maintenance that it needs, it will serve you well for years to come.

For more on improving and maintaining your home, keep reading the rest of our blog.

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